A Ballade of Home

LET others prate of Greece and Rome,
And towns where they may never be,
The muse should wander nearer home.
My country is enough for me;
Her wooded hills that watch the sea,
Her inland miles of springing corn,
At Macedon or Barrakee—
I love the land where I was born.
On Juliet smile the autumn stars
And windswept plains by Winchelsea,
In summer on their sandy bars
Her rivers loiter languidly.
Where singing waters fall and flee
The gullied ranges dip to Lorne


8 Fragments For Kurt Cobain

1/
Genius is not a generous thing
In return it charges more interest than any amount of royalties can cover
And it resents fame
With bitter vengeance

Pills and powdres only placate it awhile
Then it puts you in a place where the planet's poles reverse
Where the currents of electricity shift

Your Body becomes a magnet and pulls to it despair and rotten teeth,
Cheese whiz and guns

Whose triggers are shaped tenderly into a false lust
In timeless illusion

2/


1914

War broke: and now the Winter of the world
With perishing great darkness closes in.
The foul tornado, centred at Berlin,
Is over all the width of Europe whirled,
Rending the sails of progress. Rent or furled
Are all Art's ensigns. Verse wails. Now begin
Famines of thought and feeling. Love's wine's thin.
The grain of human Autumn rots, down-hurled.

For after Spring had bloomed in early Greece,
And Summer blazed her glory out with Rome,
An Autumn softly fell, a harvest home,


Araluen

River, myrtle rimmed, and set
Deep amongst unfooted dells—
Daughter of grey hills of wet,
Born by mossed and yellow wells;
Now that soft September lays
Tender hands on thee and thine,
Let me think of blue-eyed days,
Star-like flowers and leaves of shine!

Cities soil the life with rust;
Water banks are cool and sweet;
River, tired of noise and dust,
Here I come to rest my feet.

Now the month from shade to sun
Fleets and sings supremest songs,


Through Pleasant Paths

Through pleasant paths, through dainty ways,
   Love leads my feet;
Where beauty shines with living rays,
   Soft, gentle, sweet;
The placid heart at random strays,
And sings, and smiles, and laughs and plays,
And gathers from the summer days
   Their light and heat,
That in its chambers burn and blaze
   And beam and beat.

I throw myself among the ferns
   Under the shade,
And watch the summer sun that burns
   On dell and glade;
To thee, my dear, my fancy turns,


Resurgam

(Autumn Song)

   Chill breezes moaning are
   Where leaves hang yellow:
   O'er the grey hills afar
   Flies the last swallow;
To come again, my love, to come again
   Blithe with the summer.
But Ah! the long months ere we welcome then
   That bright new comer.

   Cold lie the flowers and dead
   Where leaves are falling.
   Meekly they bowed and sped
   At Autumn's calling.
To come again, my love, to come again
   Blithe with the swallow.


End of Summer 1966

I'm tired of murdering children.
Once, long ago today, they wanted to live;
now I feel Vietnam the place
where rigor mortis is beginning to set-in upon me.

I force silence down the throats of mutes,
down the throats of mating-cries of animals who know they are extinct.
The chameleon's death-soliloquy is your voice's pulse;
your scorched forehead a constellation's suicide-note.

A phonograph needle plunges through long black hair,
and stone drips slowly into our veins.
The earth has been squandered by the meek.


Me thinks this heart...

Me thinks this heart should rest awhile
So stilly round the evening falls
The veiled sun sheds no parting smile
Nor mirth nor music wakes my Halls

I have sat lonely all the day
Watching the drizzly mist descend
And first conceal the hills in grey
And then along the valleys wend

And I have sat and watched the trees
And the sad flowers how drear they blow
Those flowers were formed to feel the breeze
Wave their light leaves in summer's glow

Yet their lives passed in gloomy woe


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